twenty-nine

Thanks everyone for all of your sweet phone calls, texts and tweets yesterday! My birthday ended up being relaxing and a ton of fun.
Okay, I did have a slight freak out on Friday evening because reality finally sunk in that this was going to be last year of my twenties. But after spending the day with Mr. B laughing my tookus off trying to Nordic ski and having dinner with friends, all of that anxiety flew out the window. Anxiety, Shmangxiety.
Mr. B and I headed up to Ski Cooper (about 30 minutes south of Vail) early on Saturday morning. The plan for the day – ski a couple of runs at Ski Cooper, which we have never done before, and then Nordic ski to the Tennessee Cookhouse.
The drive up to Cooper was beautiful. JC was gracious and provided us with a blue bird day. Praise be.
We arrived at Cooper (Note: Not Copper) around 9:30am and were skiing in less than 15 minutes. Cooper is small ski area that has been around since World War II.  The Army cleared a few runs and installed a single tow rope to teach the famed soldiers of the 10th Mountain Division how to ski.  Since most of Colorado’s modern ski areas were started by soldiers from the 10th, you could say this is where it all started.  They only have two modern lifts on the entire mountain, and the main lift is only a two person chair! Talk about kickin’ it old school.
Since it’s so small, there aren’t very many runs and it’s not very steep. But there are ZERO crowds.  Mr. B and I managed to find a couple of fun runs with some powder.  It was nice to get the legs moving since we haven’t skied in three weeks. I told Mr. B if we ever have 8 kids, we are skiing here because it’s only $80 for a full day ski lesson with a lift ticket. That is hella cheap friends!
We only skied for about an hour because we had to get to the Nordic center by 11am. Thankfully it was located at the bottom of the base, talk about convenient.
You’re probably wondering why on Earth we were Nordic skiing. Well, one of the attractions to the Cooper area is the Tennessee Cookhouse. The Tennessee Cookhouse is a restaurant in a yurt located about a mile west of the Nordic center. You can ski, snowshoe, or snowmobile to get to it. Since we have never been Nordic skiing, as my friend Heather would say, Carpe Diem!
We rented gear and for the record, Nordic boots are wayyyyyy more comfortable than alpine boots. After a quick instruction from the salesman about clipping in and how to stop, we were off!
The first ten minutes on these things were awkward, We looked like we had been in the giggle juice for about 5 hours because we were stumbling all over the trail. You’re supposed to glide since there’s no traction on the bottom of the ski. We finally found our groove about half way up the trail. It was gorgeous! Full of snow covered pine trees and stunning views.
It took about 30 minutes to get to the yurt.  I have never been inside of a yurt so I wasn’t sure what to expect. Have you ever seen one? Apparently, they’re all the rage in Colorado. We snapped a couple of pictures and then sat down to lunch.

If you were thinking this place was going to be W.T., it wasn’t. The inside resembled a modernized Laura Engels Wilder kitchen. There was on old stove with big iron pots and wooden tables.

We started with champagne, and toasted to my birthday.

I ordered the spinach salad with pomegranate dressing and potato bacon leek soup. Mr. B had the teriyaki chicken. Both dishes were delicious.

Of  course we washed our lunch down with a homemade white chocolate oatmeal raisin cookie with whipped cream.
After lunch, we headed back to the Nordic center. But going down was a little trickier than going up. Let’s just say one corner almost caused Mr. B and I to hit and tree and almost wipe out. In order to stop in Nordic skies you have to pie wedge. All I know is that I pie wedged like a mother trucker – my ski instructors would have been so proud.
We made it safely back to the Nordic Center and bid farewell to Cooper Mountain.
The Denver Village was skiing Beaver Creek on Saturday and was hanging out at the Blue Moose so we decided to meet everyone for a drink. As soon as we arrived, all the guys started singing Happy Birthday to me very loudly. It made me smile.
We didn’t stay to long at the Blue Moose because everyone was tired and wanted to take naps before dinner. One of my favorite things to do while we are in the mountains is lay in our bed and watch movies. It was the perfect way to relax after our little adventure.
My birthday dinner ended up being at E-Town.

We ordered appetizers and of course, started with more bubbly.

I was craving their Blue Cheese burger and sweet potato fries – hello, birthday dinner!
And that friends, was how I spent my 29th birthday. The day was a perfect balance of adventure, laughter, and food.  Like I said on Friday,  life is one giant party, and this one is only getting started.